Over the year's I've been teaching I constantly examine my role as an art educator: rooted in ethics, grounded by spiritual insights and informed by various modes of knowing (pedagogy, personal experience, etc.). Palmer stated that, â€œ to teach is to create a space in which the community of taught is practiced." I believe what he meant is that there exists a dynamic, organic relationship between the student, the teacher and the subject. This semester, we will attempt to embrace this ideal while together exploring studio practice, media and personally significant subject matter.
The artistic dimension of the art teacher involves talking about art, reflecting on art, and constructing connections between art and popular visual culture. This is most effectively done while spending significant time in your own studio practice.
Both pedagogy and art practice will be examined within the context of our contemporary culture. We will attempt to maintain instinctual rigor while tying effective teaching principles to personal practice. The material we will be reading is meant to serve as a catalyst to help guide us in our discussions and making appropriate or meaningful connections.
Every day I venture anew into the classroom and explore the unique roles an art teacher assumes in this environment: teacher/mentor and as practicing artist. It's is often a difficult task to maintain an appropriate equilibrium between classroom and studio and the dynamic way these two worlds interact.